Study: Beverages and Global Disease
In response to the Global Burden of Disease Study, the American Beverage Association issued a statement
"America's beverage companies are committed to being part of real solutions to public health challenges. This study does not show that consuming sugar-sweetened beverages causes chronic diseases and the authors themselves acknowledge that they are at best estimating effects of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption.
"America's beverage companies are doing their part to offer consumers the fact-based information and the beverage options they need to make the right choices for themselves and their families."
Additional Background Information:
• According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) - one of the funding organizations of the research, those at greater risk for Type 2 diabetes include certain racial and ethnic groups (such as Hispanic/Latino, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, and American Indians and Alaska Natives), as well as those who: are over age 45; have a family history of diabetes; are overweight; do not exercise regularly; have low HDL cholesterol or high triglycerides; have high blood pressure; have impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) and/or impaired fasting glucose (IFG); have a history of cardiovascular disease; have polycystic ovary syndrome; have other clinical conditions associated with insulin resistance. Other than knowing geographical region, we have no details regarding whether these factors were accounted for in this study.
• Additionally, a study published in the Journal of Nutrition which looked at eight European countries found no association between digestible carbohydrate, including sugar, and diabetes risk.
On Heart Disease:
• Heart diseases are a complex set of problems with no single cause and no simple solution.
• When it comes to risk for heart disease, there is nothing unique about the calories from added sugars, or sugar-sweetened beverages for that matter. According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health, the major risk factors for heart disease are: high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol, diabetes, smoking, being overweight, being physically inactive, unhealthy diet and stress.
• While many risk factors are beyond our control, there are things we can do - including not smoking, maintaining an appropriate body weight and being physically active - to help mitigate risk for heart disease.
• A recent study found that atherosclerosis was found in ancient Egypt and other cultures long before sugar-sweetened beverages were invented.